I’ve been writing poetry since I was a teenager in western, upstate New York. Predictably, my first poem concerned looking into a pond’s reflection and seeing all my Jewish ancestors. Now, some many years later, I hope to layer in some of my own thoughts, feelings, artistry, as I look down the well.

Though I wasn’t always, for a long time I was a practicing Torah-observant woman, with the emphasis on practicing. I was raised on Mordechai Kaplan and Martin Buber, on Yiddish tunes, and the Psalms. I grew to love King David’s harp and pen.

I have looked for my truth as a Jewish woman, and what I have found is that my understanding of this truth has changed over time. Does it make any of it less true? Or more true? I’m not much for labels in this regard because it does not begin to cover the breadth and complexity of feelings any one soul has about God and our people and how one views the world.

In formal settings, I studied poetry under Allen Grossman’s tutelage at Brandeis University, graduating with a bachelor’s in English and American Literature, and continued my education in Creative Writing and Poetry at The New School. I spent a year abroad studying art history in Italy and archaeology in Israel. I also studied Jewish Mysticism in Los Angeles and New York.

I have strong liberal and feminist principles and am an ardent supporter of the Jewish people. I wore a Question Authority button proudly to school every day and I suppose in my mind, I still do, in the school of life. I worked in the music industry for many years and branched out to television and theater. Then I began working and writing for Jewish/arts and non-profit organizations. I’ve published articles and poems in many magazines over the years. I love all fun drama, probably more so than the next person.

I love God, our gorgeous world, giving love, and bringing beauty, depth, and color into this space of utter chaos we all call home. There is nearly always a soundtrack playing in my head as I go about my day and my writing. I’ve traveled to and lived in many places and for now, I live in Nashville, Tennessee. But one day, I will fly with you on the wings of angels where we will dance and dance and dance, where we will all know peace and joy.

Being a Jewish mother, a poet, a friend, is my life’s work. This all translates into being a lover of and advocate for poets, songwriters, artists, and kind-hearted strugglers.  If you find yourself in any of these poems, I’ll have fulfilled some of my purpose. Please enjoy and thanks for reading.

COPYRIGHT Dana Janine Diamond thejewishpoetess.wordpress.com c 2012 All Rights Reserved. Please see Copyright Notice pertaining to thejewishpoetess.wordpress.com

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